Posts Tagged ‘eating’

learnings for a new year

January 5, 2010

Happy New Year! Happy New Decade!

Taking the time to reflect back on 2009, I’ve realized that it was a very full year. I launched myself into so many different worlds: permaculture, food culture, crafting, Twitter, a new business endeavor, a renewed website. Along the way I’ve gathered skills and met some amazing people. Thinking back, it’s hard to believe that all of this happened in only one year (click on the pictures to visit related posts)…

Permaculture

Block printing


Jewelry making


Soap making


Glass bottle upcycling


Ricotta & butter making


Canning


Tweeting & meeting
I’ve met some amazing people & have had some great experiences because of Twitter


Brooklyn Food Coalition


Launching


So what will 2010 bring? Or maybe I should say, what will I bring to 2010? I’m not one for resolutions, especially at the beginning of a new year. I resolve to do things all year long, without really giving it a label. I try to have healthy expectations for what I can achieve. Here are a few things I have mapped out for this year…

  • A visit to Costa Rica
  • A learning experience in Milwaukee with Will Allen of Growing Power
  • The launch of a new endeavor – The Library of Trash (stay tuned!)
  • Blogging for Greenopolis & Aribra
  • Finding room to garden

I’ll be blogging about all of these developments as they happen, so keep your ear to the ground!

foraging find!

November 23, 2009

This past Saturday I had a lovely afternoon of foraging in Prospect Park with friends Leda, Meredith, and Liza. We spent most of the expedition picking garlic mustard and bishop’s elder, and digging up field garlic. But then eagle-eye Meredith spotted the mother lode – oyster mushrooms!

oyster-mushroom

If I had to guess, I’d say it was about 5 pounds (or more) and I had to use my trowel to divvy it up. Each share was at least enough for a dinner for two. It was the first time I’d ever found an edible mushroom – I usually buy them (for a pretty penny) at the farmer’s market.

permaculture hedonists presents (hands-on workshops)

November 10, 2009


Mmmm… kimchi [image: Wikipedia]

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Permaculture Hedonists Presents
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Hands-on workshops by Permaculture designers, educators and hedonists Andrew Faust and Adriana Magaña.

Who says you need a homestead to practice Permaculture? We’ll show you how to live the good life by putting your hands and kitchen to work! We think our bodies deserve the best and as permaculture hedonists believe that what we create with our hands is far superior to anything you can buy on the shelves of any store.

Last year we ran this series of lactoferment classes along with a Handcrafted Beauty series to great success. Many sold out fast with our cap at 10 students for each class. We checked our busy teaching and parenting schedules and set aside some dates to present these learning opportunities once again. Join us for these three fermented foods classes that will increase your vitality as well as your self-sufficiency. Come learn why they are so incredibly nutritious and how they can fit into your life.

The Handmade Beauty series will take the mystery out of formulating your own safe and cheap beauty necessities. We will explore a host of different ingredients from ones found in your kitchen cupboard to exotic floral waxes found via the internet. This series will now include household cleaners as well. All of these will be great for gift giving!

Start crafting today and share your creations with friends and family!

Lactoferments
Wednesday, November 18
6:30- 8:30-pm $40

This workshop will walk you through making a variety of lactoferments including: kim chee, sauerkraut, ginger-carrots and other root crop lactoferments. Bring 2 wide mouth 1 pint glass mason jars with lids if you would like to take home jars of our finished products. Also bring a good cutting knife a cutting board and the Organic vegatables will be supplied. Handouts of recipes will be provided. IMPORTANT!!! Please register at least one day in advance so we can insure the correct amount of ingredients. This is sure to fill up fast!

Sourdough Bread
Wednesday, December 9th
6:30-8:30pm

In this, our second fermented food workshop, we will harvest Brooklyn’s wild yeasts to make bread rise into a fluffy loaf that is truly delicious! We will show you the ins and outs of making and baking sourdough bread so that you can get started with confidence! We will also cover sourdough pancakes. Delicious! Participants should bring a small jar to take home some sourdough starter.

Handcrafting Home Brews
Thursday, December 17th
6:30- 8:30 pm $40

This third workshop will cover: malting whole grains for superlative home brew beers and will include sources for organic whole grains; preparing herbal tonics and sacred beers with wild dandelion, yarrow, rosemary and others; culturing wild yeasts. Kombucha preparation will also be covered and kombucha “mothers” will be given away to make at home. Handouts of recipes will be provided.

Handmade Beauty Part 1 and 2
Saturday, December 19th
Part 1 – 12am-2pm $40
Sunday, December 20th
Part 2 – 4pm -6pm $40

In this class we will craft a variety of body care products made from ingredients easily found in your kitchen cabinet or local heath food store. You will expand your knowledge of herbs, save money and feel your beautiful best by making and using your own handmade beauty products. Are you spending wads of cash on eco-household cleaners? Well you can stop! We will be providing recipes and samples for some of the most often used cleaners. Bring small containers (washed take out condiment containers work great) if you’d like to take some samples home.

Part 1

For your Face…
*Face Cleanser *Face Scrub
*Herbal Face Toner *Moisturizer *Tinted Lip Balm

Plus Household Cleaners!

Part 2

*Herbal Shampoo *Herbal Hair Rinse
*Body Scrubs *Tooth Powder/Paste
*Mouthwash *Shaving Cream

Plus Household Cleaners!

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Handcrafting Herbal Tinctures, Salves and Extracts will be offered after the new year. So get ready!

All of these classes will take place in our small apartment so enrollment in limited to 10 people for each class. Allergic to pets? We have two cats and a dog FYI.

Please pre-register so we know how many people to expect dreikycaprice@gmail.com

We can and will offer these classes again so please inquire if the dates don’t work out for you.

Be well,

Adriana and Andrew

P.S. We are accepting registration for our Permaculture Design Certification from March 27th through June 5th. Sign up early to get a discount and save your spot!
To register email Andrew@HomeBiome.com


The Center for Bioregional Living
Ellenville / Brooklyn, NY
www.homebiome.com

green books campaign: the raw milk revolution

November 10, 2009

This review is part of the Green Books campaign. Today 100 bloggers are reviewing 100 great books printed in an environmentally friendly way. Our goal is to encourage publishers to get greener and readers to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books. This campaign is organized by Eco-Libris, a a green company working to green up the book industry by promoting the adoption of green practices, balancing out books by planting trees, and supporting green books. A full list of participating blogs and links to their reviews is available on Eco-Libris website.

The Raw Milk Revolution: Behind America’s Emerging Battle Over Food Rights
by David E. Gumpert
(with foreword by Joel Salatin)
Chelsea Green Publishing
Printed on recycled paper

What do government regulators have against raw milk?

The Raw Milk Revolution is an exploration of this and other relevant questions in a time when the entire industrialized food system is coming into question.

Based on his blog, The Complete Patient, David Gumpert provides a reasonable, balanced, and straightforward account of the pros and cons of raw milk consumption and the legal constraints placed on its production.

The book provides historic context of the dairy industry, from about the time of the Industrial Revolution to more recent regulatory history regarding food safety. It balances past events with the current trend toward consuming raw dairy, explaining both the purported risks and benefits of the product that comes unadulterated from the cow (or goat or sheep).

A taste of the past
Pasteurization was a response to the increasingly deplorable conditions and industrialization of dairy farming. As dairy operations crowded into cities and were coupled with distilleries for “efficient” use of grain (as cow feed, something cows do not naturally eat), cows became sicker, farms became a breeding ground for pathogens.

An emotionally charged debate
But is the method of pasteurization – slow on the uptake at the turn of the century, yet widely used today – still valid? Is it making us safer? The answer is somewhat unclear. The rates of raw-milk–related illness are debatable, depending on who you ask. According to some groups, like [grass-fed] raw-milk advocates the Weston A. Price Foundation, the rates are inflated, while state and federal agencies argue that raw milk carries an inherent risk to health. As do parents of children who may have become seriously ill from it.

Raw milk is outlawed in 28 out of 50 states. But the incidence of other food-borne illnesses is just as high, if not higher, than that of raw milk. Even pasteurized milk carries some risk. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the highest rates of listeria illness are due to deli meat. If deli meat is 10 times more likely to expose you to listeria illness than raw milk, why isn’t it restricted or outlawed?

Another question I kept asking is: Why can’t we just put a label on raw milk and let consumers decide whether they want to take the supposed risk? Or more to the point, why don’t consumers have the right to choose their foods, raw or treated?

A question of rights
Joel Salatin, now famous farmer of Polyface Farms in Virginia, posits in the foreword,

The only reason the right to food choice was not guaranteed in the Bill of Rights is because the Founders of America could not have envisioned a day when selling a glass of raw milk or homemade pickles to a neighbor would be outlawed. At the time, such a thought was as strange as levitation.

Indeed, what good is the freedom to own guns, worship, or assemble if we don’t have the freedom to eat the proper fuel to energize us to shoot, pray, and preach? Is not freedom to choose our food at least as fundamental a right as the freedom to worship?

Due to the current laws regarding the sale of raw milk, people who choose to produce it are putting themselves at risk of government crackdown in order to fulfill a growing demand. Something is compelling consumers to, in many cases, cross state lines to obtain raw milk. Often, these consumers are pregnant women and mothers. Why are people putting themselves and their families at risk of breaking the law in order to potentially put themselves at risk of illness?

Having tasted raw milk and, unknowingly, carrying it over state lines illegally, The Raw Milk Revolution left me wanting to take the risk again, maybe in order to prove that the benefits are worth the risks.

I think I now have more questions than answers regarding the raw milk debate, but perhaps this is the point – to keep the questions coming with regard to food and our right to choose what we consider healthful to eat.

For more on the raw milk debate, visit The Complete Patient.

Founded in 2007, Eco-Libris is a green company working to green up the book industry by promoting the adoption of green practices, balancing out books by planting trees, and supporting green books. To achieve this goal Eco-Libris is working with book readers, publishers, authors, bookstores and others in the book industry worldwide. Until now Eco-Libris balanced out over 110,000 books, which results in more than 120,000 new trees planted with its planting partners in developing countries.

milkweed and stinky piglets

September 30, 2009

Rainy days have their benefits. The first, most obvious benefit is the replenishment of available water for plant, animal, and human use. The second is that rain keeps people from enjoying outdoor activities. Why is that a benefit? Well, if you’re visiting Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture and want to go on a vegetable tour, you may just be the only one on the tour on account of rain. And being the only ones (bf & I) on the tour last Sunday, we got special attention. Or at least that’s how it seemed to me.

We went on a whim, despite the rain and forecast for more of it throughout the day. Looking at the clock, we realized we’d have just enough time to grab a bite from the cafe and go on the two o’clock tour. So up we went, to Pocantico Hills, just north of Tarrytown. It’s lovely up there, just an hour’s drive from Brooklyn, the leaves along the Saw Mill Parkway just starting to change into their autumnal habits. Here are some of the magical things we encountered on our tour of the educational, experimental, sustainable agricultural center:


A tasty lunch at the cafe


What’s on today?


Selling the bounty at the farm market


Asclepias gomphocarpus, a type of milkweed, attracts butterflies


Happy bees on past-peak artichokes in the dooryard garden. These delicious thistles are apparently difficult to grow in the Northeast, but Stone Barns is figuring out how.


Go ahead, try one! Stone Barns encourages sampling


Super-juicy Asian pears growing in the main field are an experiment. A very tasty experiment.


Self-seeding sunflowers take over where the arugula leaves off


Purple brussel sprouts in the field…


…and yummy purple mustard greens in the greenhouse


The expansive greenhouse allows 4-season farming


Seedlings in custom compost are kept warm through water-filled, compost-heated tubes


Hoop houses on tracks also extend the seasons


Four kinds of compost are cultivated at Stone Barns


Berkshire pigs, right home in the forest mud


Hey little piggy


Sorry, we’re too busy to look at your camera


Oh, hello there. These pigs sure are cute, but they were also a little stinky.

Stone Barns is a magical place where everything is grown for a reason, everything is harvested, nothing is sprayed with pesticides or grown in artificial fertilizers. And everything is repurposed, from food scraps to plastic tarps. You can visit Stone Barns for a tour, to volunteer, or to enjoy an 8-course meal at the amazing Blue Hill restaurant.

This Saturday, October 3, is their 6th Annual Harvest Festival. Get your tickets here.

Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture
630 Bedford Road
Pocantico Hills, NY
914.366.6200

fresh: the film

September 22, 2009

If you didn’t get your fill from Food, Inc., Fresh looks like it takes the story of sustainable agriculture one step further. Featuring Will Allen (Growing Power), Michael Pollan (the man who needs no introduction), and Joel Salatin (Polyface Farms), Fresh looks at the solutions to the problems of our current food system.

Fresh will be screening at BAM, Tuesday, October 6, 7pm, followed by a panel discussion moderated by Gabrielle Langholtz (Editor of Edible Brooklyn) with the director/producer, Ana Sofia Joanes, plus Reverend Jackson of Brooklyn Rescue Mission, David Shea of Applewood Restaurant, and Letitia James, District 35 – Council Member.

Check out the official site.

the real dirt on farmer john

September 22, 2009

A farm isn’t dreamed of, conceived, and born over night. Sometimes it takes a lifetime, even generations, for a farm to really hit its stride. And a farm cannot survive, cannot thrive, without the community behind it. And sometimes the right community has to be found before the farm can really come into its own.

This is the story of farmer John. Son of a hard-working couple, somewhat of an outcast in his own town. Struggling with his story, his life, his purpose. It is a powerfully touching and revealing look at one man’s fight to hold onto his identity. And it also demonstrates the fragility of the land, the delicate balance of ownership, and the dedication that’s required to keep people nourished.

If you haven’t seen The Real Dirt on Farmer John, add it to your Netflix queue or pick it up at your local video store (if you’ve still got one).

Farmer John’s even got a cookbook

The Real Dirt on Vegetables

brooklyn skillshare: a day of learning, making, sharing, doing

September 21, 2009

I just love learning new skills. How ’bout you?

In the last year I’ve taken classes on block-printing, jewelry making, and sewing, and taught myself crochet. I’m also learning about permaculture, and I’ve signed up for a lotion and soap-making class that starts this fall (oh yeah, Happy Autumnal Equinox!). I keep piling on learning upon learning, and I’m hoping there’s room in my noggin to squeeze in some more new skills.

That’s where Brooklyn Skillshare comes in. The Brooklyn Skillshare is a one-day event of learning, making, sharing, doing!

The best part is, it’s free to the public with a suggested donation for participation. But in order for it to remain free, Brooklyn Skillshare needs your help. They have 18 days to reach their goal of $1200 to cover costs such as renting the venue for the event, paying a bike valet, supplies, food, and more.

It’s shaping up to be an amazing event with the following groups sharing skills:

* Bags for the People – create sustainable alternatives to plastic bags using re-purposed materials
* Fiber Arts – knitting and felting using natural materials
* Treasure Everywhere! – glass bottles into cups, bowls, and vases
* Home audio production using Digital Performer
* Bicycle Mechanics 101
* How to brew kombucha
* Natural/organic metal casting and jewelry making
* Screen-printing basics & DIY techniques
* Taking care of yourself with massage basics
* DIY Electronics: Fun with LEDs, solder, sound, and the Arduino
* Basic Raw Food Preparation: the art of “uncooking”
* Party Favorites: infused liquor, homemade ginger ale & tasty snacks
* Make Your Own Butter and Ricotta (with Recipes and Ideas for Using Both)

It’s an all day affair with 5 blocks of classes that are 1.5 hour long, and 3 classes happening per block. You can attend as many or as few classes as you wish, so make the most of it and attend the whole day!

Won’t you help fund this incredible event? I just did. So far they’ve received $221 in funding. That means they only have $979 to go. You can pledge as little as $1. So after you pledge (click on the widget above or go here), go tell 978 of your friends to help out with this amazing day of skill sharing.

Oh, and here are the details for the event:

The First Annual Brooklyn Skillshare
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10th, 2009

@ Gowanus Studio Space
119 8th street
Brooklyn, New York, 11215
Suite 202, Between 2nd and 3rd Avenues.

See you there!

even old new york was once new amsterdam

September 14, 2009

It’s been 400 years since Hudson “discovered” what is now the great city of New York. And people are celebrating this historic occasion in varying ways. Here are a handful of interesting events happening now:

New Amsterdam Market

I got a taste of delicious local food at this open air market where the old Fulton Fish Market once called home. Pasture-raised dairy from farms like Hawthorne Valley, Painted Goat Farm, and Valley Shepherd Creamery; natural meats from Fleisher’s and Dickson’s; and other tasty treats from the like of Marlow & Sons, Stone Barns, Saltie, and Hot Bread Kitchen filled the stalls, doling out samples and food for purchase. A couple of newcomers included Maple Hill Creamery and Basis, a healthful/local/affordable food market coming soon to 14th Street in Manhattan.

Three more opportunities are coming up for you to get in on the scrumptious action: Sundays October 25, November 22, and December 20. Get the details.


(left: peppers from the Garlic Farm; right: olive oil cake from Saltie)

Pioneers of Change

Longing for a bit of the old world? Look no further than Governors Island this coming weekend:

A festival of Dutch design, fashion and architecture on New York’s Governors Island to celebrate a 400-year Dutch-American friendship

Conceived and curated by Renny Ramakers, co-founder and director of Droog, as part of the NY400 week celebrations, commemorating the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the Dutch to New York.

Pioneers of Change highlights a more responsible and sustainable approach to living by celebrating the blurring of low- and high-brow, establishing new collaborations, encouraging involvement, emphasizing sustainability and valuing handcraft and the local context.

Activities will take place in and around eleven officers’ houses at Nolan Park, Governors Island, New York.

[via Droog]

Open: Fri 18 Sept, 10am – 4:30pm
Sat 19 Sept / Sun 20 Sept 10am – 6:30pm
Download Ferry schedule.

Get the full details here.

Enviromedia Mobile: Urban Trekkers’ Summer Festival ’09
Designated as an official Quadricentennial Ambassador by the State of New York.

I happened upon The Urban Divers Estuary Conservancy’s Enviromedia Mobile Museum yesterday in Red Hook (after hopping on the free water taxi to Ikea). What an impressionable display complete with tepees, information on falconry, info about threats to native wildlife and health, and a live barn owl!

The Enviromedia Mobile Museum will be back at Erie Basin Park (next to Ikea, one of the sponsors) on October 10th. But if you can’t wait that long, here’s their full schedule.


(top: barn owl in tepee; bottom: info on PCBs)

i made a new friend

September 3, 2009


His name is Sanford.

Sanford may have been living in our vegetable drawer since Friday. Or maybe Saturday. Or maybe just yesterday. Those are all of the days we visited the farmers market in the past week. I say Friday, because I found Sanford sleeping on the cauliflower which we picked up that day.

I sequestered Sanford in this glass container.

He napped while I cooked.

I like escargot, but I’m glad Sanford didn’t end up in the stir fry.

After dinner, we relocated Sanford to his new home. Prospect Park.

He was reluctant at first, but then made a break for it.

See ya later, Sanford.